Saturday, December 29, 2007

Evelyn Glennie

I recently watched the docmumentary about (Dame) Evelyn Glennie released in 2004 entitled, "Touch the Sound." It is really amazing, not just that she's deaf but that's she hears and listens through her whole body and produces really cool music from a whole array of instruments and common things, some we consider trash. And the documentary adds wonderful visuals.

And what does this have to do with photography? Everything. While her life and being is about sound, photography is about light. And it's just a mental breath between the two, a moment of translation to see, or hear, think and understand that sound is light, just using the senses differently. Evelyn shows that you can hear with all your senses and your whole body. While photography is a visual media, it doesn't mean you have to solely and totally rely on your eyes.

Since I started learning and working with my 4x5 camera I noticed it's too easy to get lost in the image you're trying to capture and the tecnical work of capturing the image you want. That's mostly the way is suppsed to be, to be so focused on that one image from what you see through the camera to what you imagine the image on film and in print. You have to be atuned to the scene, the image, the camera, yourself, and the light.

And that's the crux of the issue. It's all about the light. As with music, it's all about the sound, in photography, it's all about the light. But it's not about just the eyes, but the whole body, all the senses and the world. It's about being "in touch" with the whole of yourself, the image and the world. You have to find your rhythm with the light, to make your visual music captured on film and expressed in the image.

While the musician hears the music in the sheets and notes, the photographer see the music in the scene and film. Instead of a dance of sound, it's a dance of light. And thank you (Dame) Evelyn Glennie for remind me while enjoying your story and music.

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